Oct 26, 2011

Second Jang Gunchoe (Winter Debate Session) in Shree Chusang Monastery:

Report on the IInd Jang-Gun-Chos Held in Nepal.
It is stated thus:
The Lord Manjushiri implored Dignaga, and said;
You actually should compose this text--the Parmanavartika treatise;
For this will become the Eye for all beings in the future,
This visionary appearance of words too is held valid.
The study of the treatises on reasoning through debate is the Key in understanding the major Buddhist commentaries written in order to explore the meaning of the Eighty Four thousand heaps of Dharmas taught by Lord Buddha. Moreover, His Holiness the Dalai Lama gives advices that not only the Sangha community in the monasteries and nunneries should engage in the study of Buddhism but all laity society interested in Buddhism should strive to get engaged in the study of Buddhism. With this end in  view, to develop a stable progress in studying Buddhism in the monasteries,  Nepal Gelugpa Association initiates the Jang-Gun-Chos Debate Session every year. This year the Jang-Gun-Chos debate session was held for two weeks from the 11th day of the eighth Tibetan lunar month, and it is the Second Jang-Gun-Chos’ formally organized by Nepal Gelugpa Association. This year‘s debate session was held with full preparation by  Shri Chusang Yangtse Monastery near the great Boudhanath Stupa or Ja-Rung-Kha-Shor-Chod-Ten. Following were the monasteries that have sent participants in the Debate session:
  1. 35 students from Kyidong Samten Ling Monastery
  2. 86 students from Kopan Ogmin Jang Chup Choeling Monastery
  3. 50 students from Shelkar Choedhe Gadhen Lekshey Ling Monastery
  4. 45 students from Shri Chusang Samten yangtse Monastery
  5. 22 students from Chuwar Drophen Ling Monastery
  6. 25 students from Drubgon Thukje Choeling monastery
  7. 20 students from Gadhen Jamgon Ling Monastery
  8. 35 students from Gosok Phuntsok Choeling Monastery
  9. 25 students from Bodhong Pongrong Peman Choedhing monastery, and
  10. 20 Students from Drigung Kyagyud Rinchen Tsal Monastery.  Altogether over 363 students managed to take part in this year’s Jang-Gun-Chos debate session.
The first day auspicious opening function of this year’s Jang-Gun-Chos was attended by the following dignitaries, chiefs and representatives and students and monks of the respective monasteries:  Respected Mr. Thinley Lama the voluntary chief coordinator of Tibetans in Nepal ; Chief guest H.E. shri Chusang Ripoche of Shri Chusang Monastery; Respected Mr. Thinley Gyatso who is the former chief coordinator of Tibetans in Nepal; Venerable Jigdol  Lama who is the deputy chairperson of Nepal Buddhist Federation; Venerable Acharya Norbu Sherpa who is the Treasurer of Nepal Buddhist Federation;  Venerable Khenrinpoche Geshe Lobsang Jinpa of Kyidong Samten Ling monastery;  Venerable Gen Tsultrim  who is the president of Nepal Gelug Monlan Chenmo ( Great Prayer festival) organizing Committee; Besides the above mentioned dignitaries and representatives, the representative of the Nyingma in Nepal, representative of the Kyagud school, the Tibetan refugee  settlement heads, the Buddhist philosophy teachers of the respective monasteries, the discipline masters of the respective monasteries,  the heads of the monasteries, the students of the respective monasteries, donors and many more guests from both the governmental and non-governmental organizations. Altogether opening function was attended by over five hundred people.
The actual function started with the receiving-in the portrait of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to the courtyard with traditional reception to the seat. The seven limp prayers were recited by all which was led by the chant master of Shri Chusang monastery. The president of the Nepal Gelugpa Association venerable Geshe Nawang Kalsang offered Mandala to the portrait of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and he also gave a detail speech about the reason and importance of Jang-Gun-Chos debate session in Nepal and historical introduction on Jang-Gun-Chos debate system to all gathered for the function. Then the Treasurer of Nepal Buddhist Federation venerable Acharya Norbu Sherpa laid directions and talked about the importance of studying Buddhism through the debate system. The voluntary chief coordinator of Tibetans in Nepal in his speech praised the initiative of organizing the Jang-Gun-Chos debate session in Nepal. The chief Guest of the function HE.  Shri Chusang Rinpoche in his speech gave guidance and emphatically talked about the need to improve the study of debate related with Jang-Gun-Chos. The lunch was served to all gathered for the function for the day.
For fourteen days the students held classes and engaged in debate on the Pramanavartika---Commentary on Valid Cognition. During the classes and formal serious debate sessions (dhamcha Chenmo) the participants involved with rigorous, in depth and elaborate debate and study while twelve Geshes who are teachers in Buddhist philosophy daring the hardship carefully observed, helped  the student-debaters whenever in need, throughout the two week long schedule. The discipline during that period has been excellent under the observation of the discipline master of Shri Chusang Monastery and those teachers who were in the debating-courtyard. Especially Shri Chusang Monastery has prepared this year’s Jang-Gun-Chos session very well throughout the period and the magnanimous donors offered contributions well, which altogether made this Jang-Gun-Chos session a real success and a source of satisfaction.
On 25th of the 8th Tibetan Lunar month, in the afternoon, a conclusion function of this year’s Jang-Gun-Chos was held. In the function the income and expenditures of this year’s Jang-Gun-Chos was declared to all and twenty four students who were Defenders ( Dhamcha ba) from this year’s debate participants were felicitated with certificates. Finally prayers and auspicious verses were recited by all in full voice for the flourishment the Buddha Dharma.  Basically for the purpose of improving and well-establishing the study of major Buddhist philosophical texts in the respective monasteries and nunneries, Nepal Gelugpa Association takes the Rabjampa Degree examination on the five treatises of Buddhist Philosophy (perfection of wisdom, Middle Way, Valid Cognition, monastic Discipline and Treasure of Knowledge); to develop sense of inspiration and sensible competition among the students the Nepal Gelug Association gives felicitation certificates annually to the best students and these certificates are offered during the Great Monlam Chenmo prayer festival in Nepal, and the Association also organizes introductory Buddhist Workshops for the general public so that a sound foundation of the understanding and practice  of Buddhism develops in  society.
Last day of Jang Gunchoe was held on 21th of October. Gelong Thupten Rinchen (Accountant) clarifies all the expenses of Jang Gunchoe and president explain about the important of Buddhism philosophy. Finally Ven. Shree Chusang Rinpoche exprees his short views on Jang Gunchoe. Program was successfully concluded.

From the Executive office of Nepal Buddhist Gelug Association: 30th October 2011.